The budget session of the Himachal Pradesh assembly will begin on February 3 with Governor Urmila Singh’s address.
Vidhan Sabha Speaker Brij Bihari Lal Butail said that the session will have 14 sittings, including two days for private member’s business.
Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh, who also holds the finance portfolio, will present the budget February 7. This will be his 17th budget.
Butail said that besides passing of motion of thanks on the governor’s address and the general budget for 2014-15, supplementary demands for 2013-14 would also be passed.
He informed that earphones would be used in the assembly for the first time by members.
The Himachal Assembly has also decided not to introduce zero hour, at least for the time being. Butail said his endeavour would be to ensure that the business of the House was conducted smoothly.
The budget session is likely to be stormy as opposition BJP is gearing up to launch a “blistering attack” on the Congress government by confronting it on corruption charges against chief minister Virbhadra Singh. To chalk out its strategy for the budget session, the BJP legislature will meet on Sunday. Ration shortage, inadequate ration at depot and replacement of electricity meters are likely to be other issues of opposition.
The Congress is likely to counter the BJP’s accusations by raising the issue of irregularities in the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association and phone tapping scandal. To chart out the strategy the Congress Legislative Party has convened a meeting today at the residence of the Chief Minister.